My next BBQ. Kamado? Offset? Maybe both.

  • Hi guys, hoping to just get some opinions from the experienced people here that might throw some ideas/suggestions my way that I haven't yet thought of.


    So far I've been doing all my cooking on a Bunnings Akorn, well, for the last 5 years anyway, and she's nearing the end of the road so I'm looking at what to replace her with. I've done the pellet grill thing and wasn't impressed, so won't be going that way again. I was pretty set on a Kamado Joe classic, series 3, which I can get for around $3k. I like the kamado style cookers and have no complaints about the Akorn except maybe longevity. But then I got to thinking what else I could do with a $3k budget. I could get a Kamado Joe classic series 1 from the green shed for about $1400 AND a Hark Chubby offset from BBQs Galore for around $1300. I know the series 1 had a few issues with the top control vent and the one piece firebox but I was wondering if I might be able to retrofit the upgrades and still come in on or around budget :/


    I'm pretty keen on keeping a Kamado in the stable, and the Joe seems like a good long term choice, and the idea of an offset to broaden my skills sounds pretty good too. Any other options that would slot into the budget and give me more than one style of cooker? Is the series 1 even worth looking at? Am I better off just spending the coin on the series 3?


    Thanks everyone,

    Dave.

    Akorn Kamado, 12Qt &9Qt Spinifex camp ovens, spun steel camp oven, Kings <X battery spit.

  • By your video on the shepherds pie it looks like you like playing with fire so I think your idea of the Kamado and offset is a great idea.
    I don’t use my offset enough but when I do it’s well worth the effort.

    weber performer, weber compact with gas conversion, napoleon rodeo, pro q 20", PBC, ziggy portable, ozpig with rotisserie, pro smoke offset, pit boss mini kamado, asmoke portable, master built 560.

  • I think for offset, if I were curious, I'd go second hand. I'd probably use it 3 times then let it rust!


    For a left field suggestion...

    The oaky Joe drum pro is double steel, insulated like an Akorn, i think for the bottom half only though? It's apparently really efficient because of it, and maybe an interesting option as well. I'd personally like to be able to hang stuff easier than i do in the kamado. Birds come out best on meathooks (in my opinion), so a drum that otherwise behaves like a kamado seems interesting.


    For the kamado Joe 1 vs 3 question:

    There's a great comparison video on series 1 to 3 kamado Joe from "Smokin dad bbq". Maybe this is the link:

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    The gist was, no. Save your money for accessories. The difference he cares about is 4 inches of height, but that's probably not worth caring about.

  • What's the difference between series 1 and 3? I doubt it's worth double unless it comes with a heap of accessories. Primo kamados also look good to me at the high end if you haven't already checked them out.

    Offsets are great in principle, but so much tending the fire is a huge commitment which requires time and dedication. Generally that might be ok for big events, but I used mine rarely when I had it.

    So maybe the question back at you is when do you see yourself using it? The kamado is already great for low and slow. I'd be thinking more about those things that the kamado can't do as well: spit/rotisserie? Wood fired oven? Height adjustable charcoal grill?

    Another idea: buy the kamado you want/need and any savings can be spent at any time in the future when a need is more obvious to you. It could be a Sous vide, a cast iron pan, a sealer, a slicer, the list of potential toys is long ;). I'm currently awaiting delivery of a commercial grade chip cutter :D

    Masterbuilt Gravity 800 | Maximus Pizza Oven | GMG - Daniel Boone | Cyprus Grill | Big Steel Keg | Blackstone Griddle | Fire Pit | Weber Genesis |

  • Narm Naleg hmmmm a series 1 Joe and $1500 of prime beef ribs :/ You could be onto something there.

    My main concerns with the series one were the one piece firebox, which looks like isn't an issue any more, and the unpopular cast iron top vent, which i could change out for less than $200. The series 3 comes with a few other bonuses like the slow roller and metal side tables instead of plastic, not enough to be worth the extra coin. So I think you might be right. A series 1, throw some money at some accessories for it, and still have change in my pocket.

    Akorn Kamado, 12Qt &9Qt Spinifex camp ovens, spun steel camp oven, Kings <X battery spit.

  • I have an Akorn and ceramic Kamado Joe. If you decide of sticking with a Kamado style bbq I would buy another Akorn and spend the change on better quality meat as you will notice a bigger difference.

    The Kamado is one of the most efficient user of fuel. Be prepared to have higher running costs for other types of solid fuel BBQs.

    If would like to experiment with another style of bbq people have been very happy with offsets when they buy a decent brand. Keep away from the cheapies.

  • And I would only do that if and when there's an issue. I can't imagine what could be so bad with the cast iron one.

    It's more the design than the material. People were having issues with the top vent closing when the dome was opened then having to try to get it reset in the same spot every time they closed the dome. Probably just an annoyance rather than a performance issue, but I don't like annoyances haha

    Akorn Kamado, 12Qt &9Qt Spinifex camp ovens, spun steel camp oven, Kings <X battery spit.

  • You could always get a series 1 KJ and a Masterbuilt gravity for something a little different.


    I would recommend a Primo but tha5 would take up plenty of the budget unless you were OK to buy second hand.

    Enjoy your "Q"
    James

    Primo XL, GMG Davy Crockett, Char-Broil Grill2go and Weber Baby Q.

  • People were having issues with the top vent closing when the dome was opened then having to try to get it reset in the same spot every time

    That would be a pain, mind you it sounds fixable. Whether you fix or replace it, I guess my point is don't do it until you've confirmed the problem yourself. 😉

    Masterbuilt Gravity 800 | Maximus Pizza Oven | GMG - Daniel Boone | Cyprus Grill | Big Steel Keg | Blackstone Griddle | Fire Pit | Weber Genesis |

  • Lots of good ideas and food for thought, thanks. I am starting to question whether I really do want an offset, I do enjoy cooking on the kamado and haven't really found anything it can't do. When I get a hankering to play with fire a bit more hands on, I'm generally around an open fire with the camp ovens, so maybe a third cooking option would just end up gathering dust.

    I am going to go have a look at the Firehawk kamados as well next time I'm in town, they also seem to be good value for money at around $1500. Not sure if there's any Primo dealers close by, but I'll look into that as well.

    Akorn Kamado, 12Qt &9Qt Spinifex camp ovens, spun steel camp oven, Kings <X battery spit.

  • Maybe look at the KJ Classic 2?

    Same vent and fire box and side tables as the 3. About 2.2k but if you can wait for sales BQG knocks them down to 1600 which is what I got mine for.

    Cart, slow roller and extra porcelain to fit the slow roller is the only difference beside price.

  • People were having issues with the top vent closing when the dome was opened then having to try to get it reset in the same spot every time they closed the dome. Probably just an annoyance rather than a performance issue, but I don't like annoyances haha

    Easily fixed with a SMOKEWARE Vented Chimney Cap. You can get them for Kamado, BGE, Primo etc.

  • Since kids came along I don't do much low n slow (can't bring myself to cook something for 14 hours only for the kids to turn their nose up at it and ask for rice :D) so at the moment the Weber gets the most use.

    My favourite BBQ is my offset, but toddlers and offsets don't mix, so that's been sitting covered in the shed for over two years now and probably home to all sorts of critters. Hoping to get back to using it again soon though as the eldest is more open to eating meat other than mince now, the two-year old not so much ;(.

    It is a commitment though, getting up at 4am to light a fire and then tending to it all day, adding some more wood every 45 - 60 minutes. Great fun though if you enjoy playing with fire. Imagine mine will need some TLC when I finally pull it out of the back of the shed.

    If I could only have one BBQ though, it would be a kamado. Probably the most versatile of the lot. But my Akorn also hasn't seen much use lately.

  • Maybe look at the KJ Classic 2?

    The more I think about it, the more this seems like the smart way to go. Like others have said, I think I'd enjoy the challenge of learning to use the offset, but then it would just become tedious when I know how easy it is to run the kamado, so one would get used, and one would not.

    I will still go and check out the Firehawk, but if I can snag a KJ for similar money then I'd rather go that way. Now if only I could get one in black :D

    Thanks for all your help guys, appreciate the input.

    Akorn Kamado, 12Qt &9Qt Spinifex camp ovens, spun steel camp oven, Kings <X battery spit.

  • I was in the exact same position as you this time 4 years ago. I had an akorn & had always wanted an offset. I had an offer come along for a 20 inch reverse flow that i couldn't turn down & i haven't looked back. I love it, granted i don't cook as much as i would like but life & money get in the way sometimes. I was always a fire bug as a kid & was playing with fire all the time so the extra time & effort that comes with the offset never put me off.

    Yes it is a lot more commitment than a kamado as i can't leave the house longer than a quick run to the local shops or the fire goes out compared to the kamado where i had that dialed in i could go out for hours & not stress even without a fan aid.

    If i could go back would i do it again, yes i would.

    20" Reverse flow Offset, Weber GA, Weber kettle

  • Once you have black one you will never go back 😬

    Primo

    Never enough BBQ

    Primo XL, Imperial Kamado, Pro Smoke Offest, Pot belly stove, Flaming coals Spit , Jumbuck 'Rondo' Med spit, Webber Kettles, Small SS battery spit , 5 Burner beefmaster, gasmate portable bbq,

  • Not sure how this compares, but it might be worth a look. Costco has the Kamado Joe classic 2 with cover for $1599


    Masterbuilt Gravity 800 | Maximus Pizza Oven | GMG - Daniel Boone | Cyprus Grill | Big Steel Keg | Blackstone Griddle | Fire Pit | Weber Genesis |

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